HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
American Fiction
Poor Things
Thunderclap
Zeiram
Legend of the Bat
Party Line
Night Fright
Pacha, Le
Kimi
Assemble Insert
Venus Tear Diamond, The
Promare
Beauty's Evil Roses, The
Free Guy
Huck and Tom's Mississippi Adventure
Rejuvenator, The
Who Fears the Devil?
Guignolo, Le
Batman, The
Land of Many Perfumes
Cat vs. Rat
Tom & Jerry: The Movie
Naked Violence
Joyeuses Pacques
Strangeness, The
How I Became a Superhero
Golden Nun
Incident at Phantom Hill
Winterhawk
Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City
Maigret Sets a Trap
B.N.A.
Hell's Wind Staff, The
Topo Gigio and the Missile War
Battant, Le
Penguin Highway
Cazadore de Demonios
Snatchers
Imperial Swordsman
Foxtrap
   
 
Newest Articles
3 From Arrow Player: Sweet Sugar, Girls Nite Out and Manhattan Baby
Little Cat Feat: Stephen King's Cat's Eye on 4K UHD
La Violence: Dobermann at 25
Serious Comedy: The Wrong Arm of the Law on Blu-ray
DC Showcase: Constantine - The House of Mystery and More on Blu-ray
Monster Fun: Three Monster Tales of Sci-Fi Terror on Blu-ray
State of the 70s: Play for Today Volume 3 on Blu-ray
The Movie Damned: Cursed Films II on Shudder
The Dead of Night: In Cold Blood on Blu-ray
Suave and Sophisticated: The Persuaders! Take 50 on Blu-ray
Your Rules are Really Beginning to Annoy Me: Escape from L.A. on 4K UHD
A Woman's Viewfinder: The Camera is Ours on DVD
Chaplin's Silent Pursuit: Modern Times on Blu-ray
The Ecstasy of Cosmic Boredom: Dark Star on Arrow
A Frosty Reception: South and The Great White Silence on Blu-ray
You'll Never Guess Which is Sammo: Skinny Tiger and Fatty Dragon on Blu-ray
Two Christopher Miles Shorts: The Six-Sided Triangle/Rhythm 'n' Greens on Blu-ray
Not So Permissive: The Lovers! on Blu-ray
Uncomfortable Truths: Three Shorts by Andrea Arnold on MUBI
The Call of Nostalgia: Ghostbusters Afterlife on Blu-ray
Moon Night - Space 1999: Super Space Theater on Blu-ray
Super Sammo: Warriors Two and The Prodigal Son on Blu-ray
Sex vs Violence: In the Realm of the Senses on Blu-ray
What's So Funny About Brit Horror? Vampira and Bloodbath at the House of Death on Arrow
Keeping the Beatles Alive: Get Back
   
 
  Appaloosa, The A Breed Apart
Year: 1966
Director: Sidney J. Furie
Stars: Marlon Brando, Anjanette Comer, John Saxon, Emilio Fernández, Alex Montoya, Miriam Colon, Rafael Campos, Frank Silvera, Larry D. Mann
Genre: Western, Drama, ActionBuy from Amazon
Rating:  6 (from 1 vote)
Review: Dishevelled cowboy Matt Fletcher (Marlon Brando) returns home to the sun-scorched Mexican dustbowl where he spent his youth. Eager to escape his violent past, Matt wants to settle down and start a horse farm with childhood friends Paco (Rafael Campos) and Ana (Miriam Colon) and pins his dreams on a rare Appaloosa stud he procured during the Indian wars. Unfortunately, whilst repenting his sins in church, Matt becomes a scapegoat, wrongfully accused of lewd behaviour so that Trini (Anjanette Comer) can elude her bandito boyfriend Chuy Medina (John Saxon). To save face in front of his men, Medina lies that he and Trini were planning to buy Matt’s horse. When the gringo refuses to sell, Medina steals the Appaloosa, leaving him bound and humiliated in the dirt. So Matt sets out for revenge.

This slow-burning western is no classic, but quite interesting nonetheless. Less so for the straightforward, revenge-driven plot than the sweaty, claustrophobic confrontations between Brando (at his broodiest) and Saxon, and stray elements that lend it a human dimension. Missing from this screen adaptation of Robert Macleod’s novel are the early chapters that recount “the Battle of Adobe Walls”, a real-life incident that took place in 1874 in which a small group of buffalo hunters held off a large band of Indians. Although its inclusion might have provided some appreciable excitement, Brando refused to have the Indians be portrayed as nothing but savage killers.

One suspects the warm relationship Matt enjoys with his Mexican family was born of Brando’s social conscience too. These scenes are the most likeable in the movie, well played by the Latin actors and Brando delivers a quite moving speech about his love for the old man who raised him and desire to share his dreams with Ana and Paco. With so much pinned on one horse, you can understand why Matt risks all to retrieve it. None of the westerns Brando made, including his underrated self-directed One-Eyed Jacks (1960) and the wacko The Missouri Breaks (1976), were what you’d call conventional. Even here he plays, what for the genre, is an unusually vulnerable hero. He often falters and makes mistakes while bad guys continually second-guess his plans. Even Anjanette Comer’s ambivalent heroine seems drawn to him more out of desperation than any sense of attraction.

The end result is closer to a psychological western than the old-fashioned horse operas then dying out amidst the Sixties, or the grittier, but no less stylised films of Sam Peckinpah or Sergio Leone. Sidney J. Furie, of The Ipcress File (1965) and Lady Sings the Blues (1972) fame, opts for a flashy mise-en-scene that overdoses on close-ups. His camera is better at studying Brando’s fascinatingly furrowed brow than doling out some awkward gunplay. An arm-wrestling match over live scorpions is nicely handled and the showdown amidst the frozen wastes compels, but some of tension evaporates amidst the ponderous crawl. What you take away from the film is some of the goodwill inherent in those early scenes and Brando’s ability to milk every confrontation for maximum Method mumbling. Even when a scene goes nowhere, he’s compelling to watch.

Click here for the trailer

Reviewer: Andrew Pragasam

 

This review has been viewed 8036 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Enoch Sneed
Darren Jones
  Louise Hackett
Mark Le Surf-hall
Andrew Pragasam
Mary Sibley
Graeme Clark
  Desbris M
   

 

Last Updated: